HARRISBURG – Attorney General Josh Shapiro, along with a coalition of multistate attorneys general, called on Congress today to allow state attorneys general to enforce state and federal consumer protection measures for airline travelers. The request comes after prosecutors received thousands of complaints from angry travelers frustrated by the problems they faced with air travel and what they saw as the failure of airlines to live up to their responsibilities to consumers. The Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office received 408 complaints of disheartening publications in the Commonwealth.
“More than a thousand flights have been canceled in Pennsylvania this year, leaving travelers stranded,” said A.J. Shapiro. “Travel always comes with some bumps in the road, but my office has heard from hundreds of Pennsylvanians over the past few months who have faced unnecessary challenges to airline travel. As the attorney general, my office is the highest consumer watchdog in Pennsylvania and we must have the ability on protecting bulletins if laws are violated. Let us do our jobs for the public and hold companies that violate consumer protection laws to account.”
According to US Department of Transportation statistics, 2,581 departures have been canceled in Pennsylvania so far in 2022. Federal law currently places the central responsibility for addressing violations of airline consumer protection laws with the Department of Transportation, but the agency has not adhered to this. With escalating issues. State attorneys general have limited power to hold airlines accountable for unacceptable behavior toward consumers.
The letter urges Congress to pass legislation that would authorize state attorneys general to enforce state and federal consumer protection laws that govern the airline industry. It also encourages Congress to consider shifting the FBI’s airline customer complaints authority from the US Department of Transportation to an agency focused more on consumer protection.
Joining Attorney General Shapiro in this letter is the attorneys general of Arizona, Alaska, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Guam, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Hampshire, New York, Caracas, North Dakota, Northern Mariana Islands, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.
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